August 1, 2013
FORT COLLINS, Colo. -- In the Army, Soldiers train as they fight, but sometimes it is not just in the fight that one uses skills honed in training; It is in everyday activities.
For Colorado Army National Guard Capt. Ronald Bailey, Headquarters and Headquarters Battery commander, 100th Missile Defense Brigade (Ground-Based Midcourse Defense), that training helped rescue an injured hiker July 31.
Bailey, his wife Carrie, and teenage son Spencer, were hiking in Lory State Park when they came across an elderly woman who had been startled by a rattlesnake, fallen down and broken her wrist while trying to break her fall.
"We were on Arthurs Rock trail and had gotten about 45 minutes up the trail up to a scenic overlook that is about 800 feet up, and other hikers mentioned that there was a hiker who got startled by a rattlesnake and fell," said Bailey.
He headed toward the injured hiker to see what he could do. He arrived to find the woman hurting and in shock. The Larimer County authorities had already been notified, so Bailey talked to the hiker and made sure she was hydrated and as comfortable as possible.
"She was in a precarious position and I thought I might have to fireman carry her out of there with the other ranger that was there," he said. "But we waited it out and the other agencies arrived and brought a litter with them."
Bailey was one of several hikers, park rangers and rescue personnel to lift and carry the litter down the trail.
"I assisted carrying the litter all the way down the trail," he said. "It reminded me of one of the (physical training) sessions our unit had at Peterson Air Force Base (Colo.) where we practiced combat skills in the sand box, including tasks (that) were about evaluating casualties, treating for shock and litter carries."
For about a year now, members of the 100th Missile Defense Bde. have been doing group physical training that is more than just push ups and jumping jacks. Events such as low crawling and shuttle runs develop strength in the Soldiers' upper bodies, while events like picking up and carrying a litter with a dummy on it strengthens leg muscles.
Leg muscles Bailey had to use to walk the litter more than a mile down rocky terrain to the trailhead.
Bailey's wife and son had descended the trail to avoid interfering and wait.
"They were trying to figure out how they were going to get her off the mountain to the ambulance. Because Ron wasn't sure exactly how long it was going to be and we were hearing thunder, he sent Spencer and I back down the mountain. A couple hours later I discovered he had helped carry this woman on a gurney more than a mile down the mountain," said Carrie via Facebook. "Even when this guy (Ronald) isn't wearing a uniform he is still my hero."
Story also in Coloradoan http://www.coloradoan.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2013307310025